As our lives get busier and more stressful, workplaces can become high-pressure environments that can be emotionally taxing. For employees looking to improve their emotional regulation skills and work more effectively with colleagues, dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) may be the solution.

DBT is a form of cognitive-behavioral therapy that was originally developed for the treatment of borderline personality disorder. Since then, it has been adapted and applied to treat a range of mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. However, DBT can also be applied to the workplace to help alleviate work stress and foster healthy collaboration among colleagues.

DBT focuses on teaching individuals emotional regulation skills, such as mindfulness, distress tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness, and emotion regulation. These skills can enable workers to better adapt to stressors, reduce impulsivity, and communicate effectively with coworkers.

In the context of the workplace, DBT can help employees better manage conflicts, both with one another and with clients or customers. Incorporating DBT techniques in team meetings can also improve communication and collaboration among colleagues, which can increase productivity and job satisfaction.

DBT can also help employees develop a better work-life balance, reducing burnout and stress. With the increasing demands of work, many employees find it difficult to switch off outside of working hours, which can negatively impact their mental well-being and productivity. DBT can give individuals tools to set healthy boundaries and prioritize self-care.

In addition to aiding individual employees, DBT can benefit company culture as a whole. Cultivating a culture that promotes emotional intelligence and self-awareness can lead to a more harmonious – and productive – work environment. Employers can set the tone by encouraging workshops or training sessions on DBT techniques, and by incorporating DBT principles into employee evaluations and performance reviews.

While DBT is traditionally associated with clinical therapy settings, its principles can be applied in the workplace to greatly improve team dynamics and overall well-being. Taking steps to integrate DBT techniques and skills into the work culture can lead to a more productive, fruitful, and fulfilling work experience for all employees.